By Henry Ofulu
May I express profound fraternal greeting to you all, the good people of Okpai nation who despite the negligence by the people who you have defied all odd to ensure you remain peaceful and calm.
My fellow brother and sisters: I write today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you’ve bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors.
I am happy to be a son of this great kingdom that has been one of the bedrock that has contributed immensely towards feeding and sustaining this nation through the natural resources which God has blessed this kingdom with.
We, the people of Okpai are now joined in a great national effort to ensure that we continue to give peace a chance even in the face of been jilted.
For so many years now, an Okpai son or daughter have not taken the oath of office as a top commissioner in the state neither has he been a member of the House of Assembly of delta state and this have become worrisome.
At this moment, Okpai has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we, the people, have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears, which state that one day Okpai will be great again against all odds. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience sake.
That we are in the midst of bad leaders and betrayers is now well understood. Our community is at war against such leaders and betrayers who parade themselves as Okpai indigenes across our country Nigeria.
Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choice and prepare the community for a new age. Home have been lost, jobs shed, businesses shuttered, our health care is too costly, our schools fail too many and each day brings further evidence that the ways we approach issue of urgent matter is a threat to our generation hope for a better future.
These are the indication of bad leaders and betrayers, subject to date and statistics. Promoting fear all across the land; that Okpai should continue to dwell in the dark and desolate valley of segregation and the chairs of discrimination.
Till date a community where oil is been extracted still lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity, the Okpai people still find themselves on exile in their own land.
For too long, this bad leaders have reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Delta state flourished, Okpai people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered while the indigenes have to feed from hand to mouth.
This campaign is to sensitize and prepare the people of Okpai and Deltans for the future challenge.
Today Okpai community has chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord. On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our community.
In reaffirming the importance of our community we understand that greatness is never given we are ready to struggle, sacrifice everything and anything to ensure that our voices are heard and our plight been adequately tendered to as we are in total darkness while our youths continue to be relegated.
We are therefore calling on the State governor to ensure that Okpai community should not only be the goose that lay the golden eggs but it should also be the servant who must be given his due remunerations after serving his master diligently.
And for those who seek to advance their political ambition by inducing fear and disunity on Okpai people, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot out least us, and we will defeat you.
To other organization, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those bad leaders and politicians in the community who parade themselves to be representing the interest of the community but to their selfish interest, who seek to sow conflict, or disunity among Okpai sons and daughters, know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.
To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench yours fist.
We want to categorically state here that its high time the state government come and visit Okpai for an on the spot assessment and judge by themselves if the community have been properly treated, we lack good accessible roads, pipe-borne water, couple with gas flaring in our community which has rendered most agricultural activities incapacitated in the state.
May God bless you and Thank you for being part of this movement to agitate for a better Okpai community which we all deserve.
Henry Ofulu A.K.A De Good is President, Concern Citizens of Okpai Kingdom